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"(I Just) Died in Your Arms" is a power ballad written by Nick Van Eede and introduced by his band, Cutting Crew, in 1986. It was their biggest hit, peaking at #1 in the United Statesmarker, Canadamarker and Norwaymarker, and reaching the top five in the UKmarker, South Africa, Swedenmarker and Switzerlandmarker.

Background and writing

Vocalist Nick Van Eede founded the group along with Canadian guitarist Kevin Scott MacMichael in 1985, and the two made demos that led to a recording contract, before bassist Colin Farley and drummer Martin Beadle joined in 1986. The band recorded and released an album of all original material that same year, and had an international hit.

The words "I just died in your arms tonight" originally came to Van Eede while he was having sex with his girlfriend, "death" being an often-used metaphor for orgasm. Writing down the phrase, Van Eede later used it as the hook to "(I Just) Died In Your Arms."

Chart performance

First released in Britain, the song peaked at #4 on the UK charts in August 1986. Upon its release in the United States, the previously unknown band's debut single shot to number one on May 2, 1987, and stayed there for two weeks. It also reached #4 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, #24 on Billboard's Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart and (in a remix version) #37 on the Hot Dance/Club Play chart. The song spent three weeks at #1 in Canada.

Chart Peak

U.S. Billboard Hot 100 1
Canada 1
Norway 1
Sweden 2
U.K. Singles Chart 4
Ireland 2
Switzerland 4
South Africa 4
Austria 9
Netherlands 16

"(I Just) Died In Your Arms" in popular culture

Cutting Crew's "(I Just) Died in Your Arms" is featured in the 1999 film Never Been Kissed starring Drew Barrymore, as well as the 2007 movie Hot Rod. It is also featured in the video games Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002) and Karaoke Revolution Presents: American Idol Encore (2008).

The song was also featured in a season 25, episode 14 Saturday Night Live sketch titled "Wedding Singers." The sketch featured Will Ferrell and Horatio Sanz as musicians who kept starting the song before their cue. Finally, when they are given the cue, they confess that they only remember the first two sentences of the song.

Covers and samples

  • Covered in 1995 by Canadian Eurodance artist Joee, who returned the song to #1 in Canada but only cracked the U.S. Hot 100.
  • Melody sampled in DJ Bobo's "Where Is Your Love"
  • Covered in 1994 by CO.RO.
  • Covered in 1999 by Finnishmarker Gothic metal band To/Die/For
  • Covered in 2001 by Englishmarker rock band Smokie
  • Covered in 2003 by dance group Resource and released via the Ministry Of Soundmarker label
  • Covered in 2007 by Northern Kings
  • Covered in 2007 by Leana
  • Covered in 2008 by Trust Company
  • Covered in 2009 by David Cook & band during his Declaration Tour.
  • Melody is sampled in Mika's "Relax, Take It Easy"
  • Rihanna referenced the line in her song SOS : "Take me on, I could just die up in your arms tonight."
  • Covered by Canadian rock band Faber Drive as a b-side for their debut album Seven Second Surgery
  • The first two lines are also constantly sung on an episode of SNL by Will Ferrell and Horatio Sanz who are playing wedding singers.
  • The Organ in the background can be heard sped up in the Ya Boy single "Holla At Ya Boy" (2007).
  • Interpolated into/a source of inspiration for the Amerie song "I Just Died"
  • Interpolated in track "Died In Your Arms" by Smitty featuring T-Pain, produced by DJ Felli Fel
  • Interpolated in track "I Just Died in Your Arms" by Jay-Z
  • Interpolated in track "I Just Died in Your Arms" by J-Stubbs
  • Sampled in many Tupac songs
  • Remixed by Crooked I in 2007 as part of the Hip Hop Weekly series
  • Sampled by Infamous
  • Remixed by Go Mental (Jon Kyriacou aka DJ Kaos) in 1996 and again in 1997
  • Sampled by Sunspot Jonz in his song "Armz"


  1. Bronson, Fred (2001). The Billboard Book of Number One Hits. ISBN 0823076776. Retrieved January 25, 2007.


  • "Billboard". Billboard Hot 100 airplay and sales charts. Retrieved June 11, 2006.

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